Modern Analytics Prove Dave Stieb Deserved to win CY Young Award

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Major League Baseball (MLB) has progressed a long way since Dave Stieb was pitching for the Toronto Blue Jays. Stieb played an integral role for the Blue Jays during the 1980s and early 1990s, helping the club rise up the ranks to become, eventually World Series winners down the line.

He was a seven-time all-star and still holds Blue Jays records for wins, starts, innings pitched, shutouts, strikeouts and complete games. In the 1980s, Jack Morris is the only pitcher who won more games in the Major Leagues. 

However, despite being widely recognised as one of the finest pitchers of his generation, he never won the prestigious Cy Young Award.

Dave Stieb was also overlooked for the Hall of Fame, although this may be rectified by the Modern Baseball Committee who still have the power to recognise his contribution to MLB.

While Stieb admits he feels frustrated at missing out on personal accolades, he has been able to take comfort from how he is viewed by modern analytical methods.

“I love analytics, because it would’ve made me look better!” he told Betway Insider.

“When I played, it was all about wins and ERA (earned run average). That’s it. That’s all anybody cared about.

“One of my ex-teammates, Pat Hentgen, told me that if they’d used WAR (wins above replacement) back then, I’d have won the Cy Young four years in a row – ’82, ‘83, ‘84 and ‘85.

“I’m like ‘Wow, Pat. That’s great to hear, but that doesn’t do much for me right now. In fact, it makes me feel bad, because I didn’t even get one’.”

Stieb’s satisfaction with analytics is in stark contrast to how he feels about the behavior of modern-day baseball players.

Watch any MLB game and you will see wild celebrations after most big plays, with the league encouraging players to express themselves, in order to make the sport more appealing to youngsters.

Stieb was an emotional character when he played baseball, often berating himself or his teammates if he was unhappy with something.

However, he believes that things are in danger of spiraling out of control.

“Some of the stuff is so over the top that I think it disrespects the game,” he added.

“It disrespects your opponents.

“I know that MLB wants that kind of stuff in the game, but I’m old school and I don’t care for the celebrations that go on.

“It doesn’t matter if I like it or not, but I know there’s a lot of other players that I played with who agree with me. We have the same attitude towards it because of the way the game was when we played it. You just didn’t do that stuff.

“My biggest issue with it is what it does to Little League kids and high school kids. You don’t want that stuff going on in Little League. You don’t want that going on in high school. There’s not a place for that kind of behavior at that level of baseball.

“But it is what it is. I don’t like it, but they’re going to do it. That’s the game today.”

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